University of Edinburgh Referencing

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University of Edinburgh Referencing


Different academic subjects use different referencing systems so make sure you know which one is used for each course you take. You should be able to find this information in your course handbook but if you are unsure, ask someone who teaches you.

A useful guide to several of the main referencing systems can be found online at:

Guidance and factsheets on why we reference, using the work of others, avoiding plagiarism and how to cite and reference.

Why is it necessary to reference

At university you are expected to read and research, and then to use the ideas, information, data etc. in your own academic work and assignments. However, it is important to make absolutely clear where each idea or piece of information comes from by referencing it (giving your sources) in your own work. The information sheets and video clips on these pages explain why and how.

Read these two information sheets which explain more about how and why we do this:

You should also read the University of Edinburgh’s official guidance on plagiarism:

Plagiarism can be deliberate or unintentional so it is important to learn how to reference properly.